Linkedin co-founder Reid Hoffman apologized Wednesday for donating a group linked to a false information campaign during Alabama’s 2017 special election for the US Senate.
For the first time that Hoffman, acknowledged his donation to the group, called American Engagement Technologies (AET). The group allegedly used social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to boost support for Democrat Doug Jones in his ultimately successful campaign against Republican Roy Moore. Hoffman donated $750,000 to the group, according to the New York Times.
In a blog post to Medium, Hoffman wrote that he was not aware of the tactics alleged in the New York Times article that called his ties to AET He also wrote
“ That I had no knowledge of the actions the Times’ describes does not absolve me of my ethical responsibility to exercise adequate diligence in monitoring my investments. Senator Doug Jones has called for an inquiry into this alleged operation which, from reading the Times, I agree is a good idea. We cannot permit dishonest campaign tactics to go unchecked in our democracy?—?no matter which side they purportedly help. “
Hoffman’s apology after one week the New York Times reported details of the Project Birmingham.
Project Birmingham involved creating Facebook page aimed at conservative Alabamians, according to the Times report. These pages were used to divide Republicans and encouraged them to edorse a write-in candidate. It also involved a scheme to link Moore to Russian bots, according to the Times report.